By Connor Lynch
MIDDLESEX — Ontario Federation of Agriculture president Don McCabe is hoping to have one final stab at the presidency of the province’s largest farm organization as he faces down an election in Lambton-Middlesex for his director seat.
Middlesex Federation of Agriculture director and cash crop farmer Crispin Colvin has thrown his hat in the ring to be director. The 64-year old farmer is turning much of his operation over to his son, so “now it’s a little easier from a time perspective,” he said.
“I think I’ve got a pretty broad experience in my background that would be useful to the federation,” said Colvin, adding that he’s spent 12 years with the local ag federation, 16 years on municipal council for Thames Centre, both as councillor and as mayor, and he ran as a federal candidate for the Liberal Party in 2006. He was also elected Warden of Middlesex County in 2000.
Colvin said that as it stands, sometimes the grassroots perspective of members “isn’t as respected as it should be,” and that the organization needs to step up its efforts to educate non-farmers and non-agricultural groups about what farmers do and engage with the provincial government on efforts towards deregulation. “The single biggest issue we deal with is regulation.”
McCabe said that he wants “the opportunity to wrap up some of the initiatives that I’ve been involved in.
“In the last two years we’ve had the majority government here moving ahead rapidly with big policy decisions.
Those policy decisions now need to be turned into regulations and programs. I want to make sure the regulations ensure that rural Ontario is heard.
“We don’t have anything on the ground, and I’d like to make sure they work when they hit the ground.”
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